Geothermal Environment in Hawaii
At a Glance
|Environmental Review Process:||Hawaii Environmental Policy Act (HEPA)|
|Environmental Review Agency:||Hawaii Department of Health Office of Environmental Quality Control|
|Type of State Environmental Review (Leasing Stage):||None|
|Type of State Environmental Review (Non-invasive Exploration):||None|
|Type of State Environmental Review (Invasive Exploration):||HEPA Process|
|Type of State Environmental Review (Drilling):||HEPA Process|
|Type of State Environmental Review (Power Plant Siting):||HEPA Process|
|Contacts/Agencies:||Hawaii Department of Health Office of Environmental Quality Control, Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources Historic Preservation Division, Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Forestry and Wildlife, Hawaii Department of Health Clean Water Branch, Hawaii Department of Health Clean Air Branch, Hawaii Department of Health Solid and Hazardous Waste Branch|
State Environment Process
Hawaii Environmental Policy Act Review
All projects must follow the Hawaii Environmental Policy Act (HEPA) environmental review that propose to use state or county lands or funds, or lands within conservation districts, shoreline areas, historic sites, in the Waikiki Special District or proposing a wastewater system, waste-to-energy facility, landfill, oil refinery, or power generating facility. The process is regulated by the Hawaii Department of Health Office of Environmental Quality Control (OECQ) under H.R.S. 343 and H.A.R. 11-200. A determination must be made whether the proposed activity will have a significant impact under H.A.R. 11-200-12. To make this determination, the developer must follow the Environmental Assessment (EA) process.
The Environmental Assessment process is regulated by the OECQ under H.A.R. 11-200-10. The process involves review and approval by OECQ of a draft EA, public notice and comment, and a determination if the proposed activity will have a significant impact. If OECQ determines the proposed activity will not have a significant impact, the draft EA is revised and a final EA is produced subject to OECQ approval. Upon approval the OECQ will issue a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI).
If the OECQ does not issue a FONSI, the developer must follow the EIS Process under H.A.R. 11-200-16. The process involves review and approval by OECQ of a draft EIS, public notice and comment, and completion of environmental studies and agency consultation. The draft EIS is then revised and a final EIS is produced subject to OECQ approval.
State Historical Preservation Review
Developers must complete the historic preservation review process through the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources Historic Preservation Division (SHPD) to assess the effects of the project on significant historic properties. The historic preservation review process is governed by Hawaii Administrative Rules 13-197, 13-198, 13-275 to 13-284, and 13-300. The SHPD will determine if significant historic properties might exist in the area through a process of notice and comment. If significant historic properties might exist in the project area, the SHPD will complete an inventory survey and upon an affirmative finding require a detailed plan to avoid, minimize, or mitigate adverse effects subject to SHPD approval. Execution of the plan is subject to verification by the SHPD.
Habitat Conservation Plans and Incidental Take License
If a developer proposes activity within an area containing endangered or threatened species and the activity might result in the incidental take of a member of those species, the developer should obtain an incidental take permit through the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DFW). The state process is regulated under H.R.S. 195D-21. The process requires the developer to submit a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) to DFW and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) (or the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration). HCPs are subject to approval by DFW and FWS (or NOAA) after an extensive review and consultation process. Upon approval of a final HCP, the agencies will issue an incidental take permit.
Water Resources Assessment
Developers may require permits or approvals for discharge of a point source or nonpoint source pollutant, water quality certification, underground injection control, or other water pollution regulations.
Developers proposing activities that will result in the discharge of nonpoint source pollution must comply with Hawaii’s Polluted Runoff Control Program implemented by the Department of Health Clean Water Branch (CWB) and the Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism (DBEDT). The program was implemented as required by federal law under the Coastal Zone Management Act (CZARA), 16 U.S.C. 1456 and the Clean Water Act, 33 U.S.C. 1329.Runoff from construction sites is permitted under Section 401 Water Quality Certification (WCQ) program.
Developers proposing activities that will discharge pollutants from a point source into state water supplies must obtain a National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit from the Department of Health Clean Water Branch (CWB). Permit approval is regulated under H.A.R. 11-55. The permit process involves CWB review of the application, notice and comment, public hearings, and CWB approval.
To ensure construction site runoff will not violate applicable water standards, developers must obtain a Section 401 Water Quality Certification (WCQ) Permit from the Department of Health Clean Water Branch (CWB). WCQ permits are required under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act, 33 U.S.C. 1251, and Hawaii Administrative Rules Title 11, Chapter 54. No permit is required if no federal license or permit is required, or if no pollutants will be discharged into State waters. WCQ Permit Applications are subject to approval by the CWB. The CWB will provide for notice and comment, and hold public hearings.
Developers proposing to construct, operate, modify, or abandon an underground injection control well must obtain an Underground Injection Control (UIC) Permit from the Hawaii Department of Health Safe Drinking Water Branch (SDWB). The permitting process is regulated under H.A.R. 11-23. New underground injection wells require an application with a signature from a geologist or professional engineer. If the proposed activities will inject any substance into an underground source of drinking water, the SDWB must complete a notice and comment process. To complete the application process after construction of the well, the developer must have the well tested and submit a final engineer/geologist report to the SDWB, subject to SDWBs final approval. The UIC permit will be issued upon final approval.
Developers must obtain a variance from pollution control when a facility will discharge a water pollutant in excess of applicable standards. This process if regulated by the Hawaii Department of Health Clean Water Branch (CWB) under H.A.R. 11-62. The application process provides for notice and comment, a hearing, and is subject to CWB approval.
Air Quality Assessment Process
Developers proposing to construct, reconstruct, modify, or operate a stationary source of air pollution must obtain an Air Pollution Control (APC) Permit from the Hawaii Department of Health Clean Air Branch (CAB). APC Permits are regulated under the Clean Air Act , 42 U.S.C. 7401, et seq and H.A.R. 11-60.1. Upon submission of an APC Permit Application, the CAB will review the application, issue a draft APC Permit, and commence a notice and comment period.
Hazardous Waste and Materials Assessment Process
Developers proposing to install and operate an underground storage tank or system must obtain an Underground Storage Tank (UST) Permit from the Hawaii Department of Health Solid and Hazardous Waste Branch (SHWB). UST Permits are regulated under H.A.R. 11-281. Upon issuance of a UST Permit, the developer must install the UST or system within one year, and the permit is valid for a term of five years. Upon installation, the developer must notify SHWB.
Owners and operators of hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal (TSD) facilities must obtain TSD permits as required by both H.A.R. 11-261 and 40 C.F.R. 270. The State of Hawaii regulates permitting of TSD facilities through the Department of Health Solid and Hazardous Waste Branch (SHWB). For treatment facilities, which are facilities that treat generated hazardous wastes onsite and then ship the waste off site, owners and operators must obtain a Generator Treatment Permit. TSD facility owners and operators must also obtain approval of RCRA Hazardous Waste Permits Part A (for site identification) and Part B (for narrative description). RCRA permits are subject to approval by the SHWB. Owners and operators of TSD facilities must pay annual operation fees.
Developers seeking to construct a wastewater treatment facility must obtain an Individual Wastewater Management (IWM) Permit from the Hawaii Department of Health Clean Water Branch (CWB). IWM Permits are regulated under H.A.R. 11-62 and H.R.S. 342D. If the treatment facility will discharge water pollution in excess of applicable standards, the developer must also initiate the Variance from Pollution Control process. If the wastewater sludge will be treated for land application and NPDES permit must be obtained and if the proposed treatment works discharges into an underground injection well a UIC permit must be obtained.
Developers must submit a Chemical Inventory Report to the Department of Health if a facility will store, use, or manufacture any hazardous substance that is equal to or exceeds reporting thresholds established by the Hawaii Chemical Inventory Form. The submission process is regulated under H.R.S. 128E.
Local Environment Process
Policies & Regulations
- 33 U.S.C. 1329 - Nonpoint Source Management Programs
- EPA Coastal Zone Act Reauthorization Amendments (CZARA) Section 6217 Webpage
- EPA's Clean Water Act Section 319 Webpage
- EPA's Hawaii NPS Program Webpage
- H.A.R. 11-200 - Environmental Impact Statement Rules
- H.A.R. 11-23 - Underground Injection Control
- H.A.R. 11-261 - Hazardous Waste Management
- H.A.R. 11-265 - Hazardous Management: Interim Status Standard for Owners and Operators
- H.A.R. 11-281 - Underground Storage Tanks
- H.A.R. 11-46 - Community Noise Control
- H.A.R. 11-54 - Water Quality Standards
- H.A.R. 11-55 - Water Pollution Control
- H.A.R. 11-60.1 - Air Pollution Control
- H.A.R. 11-62 - Wastewater Systems
- H.A.R. 13-197 - Hawai`i Historic Places Review Board
- H.A.R. 13-198 - Hawai`i and National Register of Historic Places Programs
- Hawaii Administrative Rules Pertaining to Historic Preservation
- Hawaii Air Pollution Control Permits Webpage
- Hawaii Application for Community Noise Permit (DOH Form CNP)
- Hawaii Application for Community Noise Variance (DOH Form)
- Hawaii Clean Water Branch Forms Webpage
- Hawaii DOH Hazardous Waste Section Webpage
- Hawaii DOH Solid Waste Section Webpage
- Hawaii Department of Health Clean Air Branch Webpage
- Hawaii Department of Health Underground Storage Tank Webpage
- Hawaii Department of Health Website
- Hawaii Department of Health e-Permitting Portal Webpage
- Hawaii EIS-EA Permit Packet
- Hawaii Emergency Planning and Community Right-To-Know-Act Chemical Inventory Reporting Permit Packet (Appendix S-10)
- Hawaii Guide for Filing Community Noise Permit Applications
- Hawaii Guide for Filing Community Noise Variance Applications
- Hawaii Guide to the Implementation and Practice of the Hawaii Environmental Policy Act
- Hawaii Guidelines for NPDES Notice of General Permit Coverage
- Hawaii HEPCRA Hazardous Chemical Storage and Tier II Reporting Webpage
- Hawaii Habitat Conservation Plans Webpage
- Hawaii Historic Preservation Permit Packet
- Hawaii Individual Wastewater Management Permit Packet
- Hawaii Information Package for Chemical Inventory Form (HCIF)/Tier II
- Hawaii NPDES General Permit Notice of Intent Forms Webpage
- Hawaii National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit Packet
- Hawaii Noise Forms and Links Webpage
- Hawaii Office of Environmental Quality Control Webpage
- Hawaii Permit Application for Solid Waste Management Facility
- Hawaii Polluted Runoff Control Program Webpage
- Hawaii State Habitat Conservation Plan Permit Brief
- Hawaii State Historic Preservation Website
- Hawaii Underground Injection Control Permit Packet
- Hawaii Underground Injection Control Permitting Webpage
- Hawaii Underground Injection Control Program Webpage
- Hawaii Variance from Pollution Control Permit Packet (Appendix S-13)
- … further results